DARIEN, Conn.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Genesee & Wyoming Inc. (G&W) (NYSE:GWR) announced today that it has agreed to acquire the shares of Atlantic Western Transportation, Inc., parent company of Heart of Georgia Railroad, Inc. (HOG). Terms of the acquisition were not disclosed. The acquisition is subject to customary closing conditions, including the receipt of U.S. Surface Transportation Board approval, and is expected to be completed in the second quarter of 2017.
HOG was founded in 1999 and operates across the state of Georgia on 219 miles of track leased from the Georgia Department of Transportation. It connects with G&W’s Georgia Southwestern Railroad at Americus, Ga., and with G&W’s Georgia Central Railway at Vidalia, Ga. HOG serves an inland intermodal terminal at Cordele, Ga., providing five-day/week, direct rail service via the Georgia Central Railway to the Port of Savannah for auto, agricultural products and other merchandise customers. HOG has Class I railroad connections with CSX at Cordele and with Norfolk Southern at Americus and Helena, Ga.
HOG transports approximately 10,000 annual carloads of agricultural products, feed, fertilizer, and lumber and forest products, of which approximately 2,000 carloads are interchanged with G&W’s Georgia Central Railway. Following the acquisition, HOG will be managed as one of G&W’s Coastal Region railroads, led by Senior Vice President Andy Chunko.
“The Heart of Georgia is an excellent bolt-on acquisition that we expect will enhance economic development by providing an efficient lane across southern Georgia,” Mr. Chunko said. “Its proximity to other G&W railroads unlocks operational efficiencies, while enhancing the railroads’ abilities to serve customers and generate new commercial opportunities across the region.
“We look forward to the 15 HOG employees joining those at our connecting railroads and working with our Class I partners to expand HOG’s recent success in driving more traffic onto rail in Georgia and Florida,” Mr. Chunko continued. “We also look forward to broadening our already strong relationship with the Georgia Department of Transportation and Georgia Ports Authority, in a state where we have established a significant long-term presence, operating 11 railroads over more than 600 track miles.”
Genesee & Wyoming owns or leases 122 freight railroads worldwide that are organized in 10 operating regions with approximately 7,300 employees and 3,000 customers.
- G&W’s eight North American regions serve 41 U.S. states and four Canadian provinces and include 115 short line and regional freight railroads with more than 13,000 track-miles.
- G&W’s Australia Region provides rail freight services in New South Wales, including in the Hunter Valley coal supply chain, and in the Northern Territory and South Australia, including operating the 1,400-mile Tarcoola-to-Darwin rail line. The Australia Region is 51.1% owned by G&W and 48.9% owned by a consortium of funds and clients managed by Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets.
- G&W’s U.K./Europe Region is led by Freightliner, the U.K.’s largest rail maritime intermodal operator and second-largest rail freight company. Operations also include heavy-haul in Poland and Germany and cross-border intermodal services connecting Northern European seaports with key industrial regions throughout the continent.
G&W subsidiaries provide rail service at more than 40 major ports in North America, Australia and Europe and perform contract coal loading and railcar switching for industrial customers.
"Safe Harbor" Statement under the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995: Statements in this press release regarding Genesee & Wyoming's business which are not historical facts are "forward-looking statements" that involve risks and uncertainties. For a discussion of such risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements, see "Risk Factors" in the Company's Annual Report on Form 10-K for the most recently ended fiscal year.